Since late 1999 Troy has started or acquired and grown 14 businesses with 28 business partners in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom in technology, alcohol (beer, whisky, gin and vodka), retail, accommodation, food, education, social enterprise and construction. The areas of expertise he brings to a business and Board include strategy, management, technology and finance. Currently Troy Chairs two of the four Boards he sits on and provides coaching to a handful of CEOs and founders of interesting, fast-growing businesses in various sectors. In 2004 Troy founded the Grow A Small Business community, which now has a weekly business podcast with two episodes going live a week, The cast hears from small business owners who have had at least five team members, and grown their business.
- Filling the gap of the podcasting world by highlighting the reality of small businesses
- The optimal way of building a podcast designed to scale your business and impact
- Why podcasting is still a great investment for your business and brand
This episode is brought to you by “Podcast Accelerator Challenge“. I’ve been using podcasting as a powerful business growing tool for years. Nothing is more powerful than podcasting for help businesses grow. If you’re tired of playing roulette with your ad dollars and frustrated with algorithms constantly changing on social media platforms, the only thing that has changed about podcasting is the popularity of the platform.
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Select Links from the Episode:
- Podcast Pipeline
- Grow a Small Business Podcast
- The Distillers Institute Website
- Grow a Small Business Website
- Troy Trewin on LinkedIn
- Grow a Small Business on Facebook
- Grow a Small Business on Instagram
- Using over 2 decades of experience to help small businesses through their pain points and grow (01:37)
- What made Troy realize the necessity of choosing the small business niche for his podcast (03:21)
- Accelerating the impact of his expertise and passion through podcasting (04:20)
- How his podcast complements his core online businesses (05:55)
- Overcoming the struggle of getting into his groove at the start of his podcating journey by being consistent and having a buffer (09:43)
- Confronting the reality of having a small business by highlighting failures (11:39)
- Finding success in podcasting by connecting guests and building a benevolent community (12:28)
- His number 1 piece of advice for anyone looking to start and sustain a podcast (14:30)
- Taking advantage of delegation in order to produce more podcast episodes (15:58)
- Automating processes in podcast production with tools (18:01)
- Why podcasting is a great platform to consume knowledge and is here to stay (18:42)
Cliff Duvernois: Today’s episode is brought to you by podcast pipeline. We’ll take care of all your podcast production so you can focus on your business. Visit us at PodcastPipeline.com.
Cliff Duvernois: Hey there world changers. We’re back with another episode of the Entrepreneurs on Podcasting. Now, since 1999, today’s guest has had 26 business partners in 13 businesses across three countries, loves the challenge and reward of growing a small business to something. Bigger now his podcast provides insights, lessons, learned books and tools as well as habits that experienced business owners suggest that you develop.
Cliff Duvernois: And they also do interviews as well to unearth the tremendous value for anybody. That’s wanting to grow their business with less stress. And that’s the keyword right there. Please. Welcome to the show, the host of the grow, a small business show. Troy Trewin. Troy, how are ya?
Troy Trewin: Very good. Cliff, thank you very much. And it’s a great introduction and I’m really glad to be on the show.
Cliff Duvernois: Wonderful. And why don’t you tell us a little bit more about your, your business and what it entails?
Troy Trewin: Sure. The Grow Small Business we’ve got the weekly podcast. We’ve got casts going live on a Monday and a Thursday. So then only takes me personally a couple of hours a week. Cause I’ve got a really good off shore team that takes care of, the podcast editing and socials, et cetera. Most of my time now these days though is sitting on boards.
Troy Trewin: So there’s four boards here in Australia that I sit on and I chair two of those do a little bit of CEO coach. A couple of projects here and there. And then we launched an online course to almost two years ago now called the distillers Institute for anyone thinking of starting a distillery here in Australia.
Troy Trewin: So the grow small business community is a lot of content through the podcasts and weekly leadership email that we send out. So it’s really there to help other business owners Grow their business and also reduce stress both in the business and for themselves and their team. And we do that through having experienced business owners on outcasts that have grown a business before they’ve had at least five team members.
Troy Trewin: So it’s not really for startups. It, it it’s for the audience that wants to know how to get to that next level of growth. If they’re in a growth mindset at the moment. So they enjoy hearing, not just the successes and the wins that these business owners have. But also the pains and mistakes that they’ve made, which I think is equally important so that you can help more business owners avoid them.
Cliff Duvernois: Exactly. And I think you’re bringing up a really good point there because it’s not just, you know, the scores and the victories, but, what were the challenges that you faced and how did you get over them? If you can help somebody to avoid that problem or at least point them towards a potential answer, you know, I think that could go a huge way into providing a lot of value to your listeners, like you said, the ones that actually have the growth mindset.
Troy Trewin: Absolutely when I researched. So we launched the Casper over two years ago now. And, uh, our 200 episode actually goes live in a few weeks just before good Friday. And when I was researching the cast, I felt there was a gap out there of clearly the content. The questions that I asked is about 28 structured questions to draw out those successes and pains.
Troy Trewin: And the another area I thought that was lacking was in between the startups and the unicorn. So there’s a lot of great podcasts out there that like how we met, How We Built This, for example, but that’s often talking to unicorns, the one in a million or 10 million that have made it, which is just not realistic for most of the small business owners out there.
Troy Trewin: And as you’d know, Cliff. In most developed nations, small businesses provide 60 to 70% of the jobs for that nation. And it’s an economic powerhouse.
Cliff Duvernois: so you, you see this as need there’s a need out there for this kind of show, but let’s take a step back. What made you decide to get into podcasting in the first place?
Troy Trewin: Well being mentoring for about 14 of my 21 years in business. Now just informally pro bono started in Melbourne. I had 10 years in Melbourne, then four years in London now being in beautiful Tasmania here in Australia, just in island, south of Melbourne for about 11 years and having now 13 businesses and a lot of business partners people would approach me for advice.
Troy Trewin: And so. What I found a couple of years ago was podcasting was really taking off. And I thought that might be able to help a lot more people, a lot faster with the one to many, through a podcast, rather than that, one-on-one mentoring. Naomi, sorry, cliff. Yeah.
Troy Trewin: the other, and the other thing is I just purely enjoy talking to business owners and it’s a, it’s a great way to meet interesting businesses and business owners around the world. So it’s a really good platform for me to learn pick up great tips and advice and resources to consume from other business owners in an, in about an hour chat. couple of times a week.
Cliff Duvernois: Now, with regards to your podcast, then in putting it out there. And I love the conversation topics, uh, that you’re picking because it is true. It seems like everybody there talks about how they want to, you know, very initially start a business or like the unicorns. So it’s great that you were able to, to spot that hole in the center where you could go in and offer something unique to the podcasting marketplace.
Cliff Duvernois: For your podcasting, how does that work or connect back with your, with your core business? Or is this just something advice you’re just putting out there for self gratification to help the people? What are you thinking?
Troy Trewin: It’s a bit of all those things, definitely to help the other business owners, because I’ve seen a lot of pain and stress and, you know, mistakes made in business. So helping really helping to avoid people, make those same mistakes and live a better life. Really. It’s also from my enjoyment that thirdly, that it’s part of our brand or marketing for our business.
Troy Trewin: So we’re, we’ll be launching some courses online later this year, which is delayed by a year or so. Because we decided to launch another online course business. As I mentioned before, the distillers Institute that was just under two years ago, we’ve now got 360 students doing one of our two courses.
Troy Trewin: We’ve just launched calls to a month ago. So that took a lot of time, but three business partners in that business, but it was also a great learning opportunity for us at Grossmont small business to launch another online business quickly and obviously focus on the marketing. So we’re going to change a lot from what we initially planned for our courses here.
Troy Trewin: So the podcast provides great exposure to business owners that might want that structured advice and information, plus a community behind it with the accountability groups, eight business owners. When we get to launching those later this year,
Cliff Duvernois: so my question to you is for the courses that you’re coming up with, the ones you’re going to be developed, developing and implementing this year. So before you mentioned about the distillers Institute, Is this going to be like a little bit more evergreen for more businesses to be able to take advantage of and just, you know, plug in their vertical, their niche, whatever it is, and still be able to apply that same advice.
Troy Trewin: Yeah, absolutely. The, the Distillers Institute doesn’t focus on the technical aspects of how to make great spirit. There’s an institution in Edinburgh, Scotland, the Institute of Brewers and distillers, which is an excellent resource, so that we point our students to do that technical training that has seals issued courses more on the business sides of business plan, market research, marketing plan, financial model, and a paper background on the industry.
Troy Trewin: The small business calls. Is for any industry anywhere in the world. But we do our focus is to help people with five to 20 team members and they don’t know how to grow to that next level. Their inhibitor may be capital. It could be marketing, but a lot of the times it’s people and management, so recruitment and also the, you know, either no strategy or no clear strategy.
Troy Trewin: Proper execution of that strategy. So the three courses help on all those levels, the strategy and leadership first for the business owner. So the sole business owner will look we’re target. This is working in the business. The second course is for all the managers in the business to do, because I think there’s a real gap of great content out there for developing yourself and your own managers as a good manager.
Troy Trewin: And so we pointed some of the world-class resources that we’ve come across over the last 22 years. And the third course is for everyone in the team to do so. The effective team member course, which is to increase productivity, but also reduce stress. By giving the team better habits, some productivity tools and tips, and also the mindset change, which sometimes has to be a company-wide or business wide.
Troy Trewin: Those changes to make it really effective.
Cliff Duvernois: And I’m a big believer in mindset. So know, thank you for that. I know we talked about the three standpoints that you’re getting out of your podcasting, but let’s talk about how are you using podcasting in your business? Is it just purely a marketing play or like, how are you using it?
Troy Trewin: Yeah, it’s purely marketing. We will never advertise on the cost. So it?
Troy Trewin: really is from a business point of view. It’s, it’s a brand building and marketing.
Cliff Duvernois: No. Now, when you got into podcasting and I believe you said you had 200 episodes that were up when you got into podcasting, what was one of your biggest struggles when you just got started?
Troy Trewin: I think it was, it was breaking into my calendar to be honest.
Cliff Duvernois: Oh, wow.
Troy Trewin: Yeah, it’s it’s once I built that habit of, this is a rocking my fish tank as Stephen Covey talks about and put those times in my calendar. We went, we started with one, one cask going live a week and then October 20, 20, less than 12 months later, we added the Thursday slot as well.
Troy Trewin: And it was just a matter of making sure that I built up a buffer I think we only missed one ruled go live. And so it’s both for my offshore team. Who’s editing if they’re sick or need to be away. So we generally have about a month buffer now. So it was building up that, that that bow wave of, of time.
Troy Trewin: And then, it hasn’t really been a problem. Finding guests. We’ve got one of our offshore team members does guest outreach. I do a little bit as well. So I would say just making it that habit and locking in that time.
Cliff Duvernois: Yeah. Cause one of the things that that I teach is, is making sure that, uh, you can do is the batching. I’m a big believer in batching. So like today, for instance, all I do all day long is just interviews and then I’m set for the next month
Troy Trewin: exactly.
Cliff Duvernois: month and a half or whatever it is because it just takes one day, one full day, rather than one here, one here, one here, one here, one
Troy Trewin: Yeah.
Cliff Duvernois: And it’s always interrupting. I’ll I’ll, I’ll forget, I’ll be at a doctor’s appointment. Someone will ping me and be like, Hey, I’m waiting to be interviewed. And I’m like, sorry, I forgot. You
Troy Trewin: Yeah, no, it’d be the same when Wednesday’s a big days for me, bill Thursday and a couple of windows on Friday, just because we have a lot of international guests on the cast. So the timing difference can be a bit of a pain.
Cliff Duvernois: Certainly . So a question I want to circle back on is that obviously you’ve got extensive experience on this. You’ve you’ve had all these successful businesses, all these partners. Why is it important for you to go back and help the small businesses grow?
Troy Trewin: Well, firstly, not all of them were successful. Some of them were flops and failures and other ones just died. It’s because I’ve seen a lot of pain in the small business community, a lot of divorces you know, mental health issues from business owners. So I think getting more material out there to help them is, is gonna make not just their lives better, but their businesses?
Troy Trewin: and also their local economy.
Troy Trewin: As I said before, small business is such a big generator of jobs and the economy in most developed nations. So it’s something I’ve got a real passion for is to help people out there. Have lived their best life and have the greatest chance of.
Cliff Duvernois: Nice. Nice. And with your podcasts out there now, and with having 200 episodes. Why don’t you share with us? Like maybe what was what’s one of the biggest successes that you’ve seen come from your past.
Troy Trewin: One of the things I really love doing is building a network and connecting people. So there’s probably one in three or four guests that we have on I’m able to either connect them with someone that’s been through an experience. As a good example, was I here in Australia and had interviewed across probably a month.
Troy Trewin: It just happened to be that. There were two women that had franchised their business. One had a good experience. One had a bad experience, and then there were two women that were considering franchising. And so I was able to connect those four. And the two experience with the experience were able to impart their knowledge and advice to the two considering franchising their business.
Troy Trewin: So it’s a great joy for me when I’m able to. People in that way, connect them up, or even just give them tips and resources, whether it’s books, great books, podcasts that will help them, or particularly here in Australia government grant programs. For example, when we talk about funding and one of the questions I asked there is, how did you fund your business?
Troy Trewin: And if they don’t mention grants, I’ll say, which ones have you accessed? Cause there’s some good ones here in Australia, but I think like most countries, the government support marketing, these grants, and a lot of business owners don’t know about them. So it’s really good to that. The even just the guests on the cast and the audience obviously benefits from that as well.
Cliff Duvernois: Oh, that’s actually a really great point that you point out because if you’ve. If you have that experience getting a hold of those grants and how to do it. And every single year, I remember I went through this many moons ago when I was looking at grants to start a business. Is there so much money that the government gives to small businesses to use, to be able to market and grow their business that just goes unclaimed,
Troy Trewin: Absolutely.
Cliff Duvernois: Nobody either knows about it or they just think, oh, well, I’m not going to get it. So they don’t even bother to apply.
Troy Trewin: Exactly. Yeah. Yep.
Cliff Duvernois: So what I’d like to do is for the entrepreneur, that’s out there. If they’ve got a podcast, you know, maybe they’re struggling, like you said, you’re, you’re 200 episodes into it and I like it cause you really approach it from, from a really high level CEO standpoint.
Cliff Duvernois: If they’re struggling, what would be like a key piece of advice or some pieces of advice that you would give them?
Troy Trewin: The first piece of advice I’d give is just make a start. when I Googled, before I recorded my first cast and have a guess Cliff, what’s the average number of episodes of podcasts out there on the internet. Well, two years ago, when I look at.
Cliff Duvernois: Well right now they’re saying there’s about 1.5 million podcasts out there.
Troy Trewin: Yep. So the average number of episodes for podcasts on the internet is seven. So obviously you’ve got, you got Joe Rogan’s got, you know, hundreds of casts and some, some other big casters like that. So I think it is just making a start and then being consistent, like I said before, building out habit, putting that time in your calendar.
Troy Trewin: I’m very, uh, you know, productivity and efficiency driven. So right from the outset, it was quite easy for me to also set up the procedures and delegate that to the offshore team very, very quickly. So I literally spend just the one hour recording each cast, and then the offshore team takes care of everything else, editing, getting those drafts show notes and audio to the guests for final feedback for it goes live, socials, guests, outreach, all that.
Troy Trewin: If you are looking at doing this. Just make a start, be consistent. And then, and then if it’s getting, you know, eating up too much of your time, they look at ways to be able to delegate a lot of the lower value tasks.
Cliff Duvernois: So, where were you when I started my podcast, that was so long ago. Not because I learned how to do everything wrong. And I was, man, it was burning 10 to 12 hours a week on my podcast. So I couldn’t see you for bringing that efficiency to it.
Troy Trewin: I mean, that’s, that’s a good point. I’d love to learn how to do video and audio editing. I’d love to do more marketing and the socials and creating, pulling, quotes out and the audio quotes out, et cetera. But again, I guess going back to that strategic thinking which I do the way I looked at that is instead of spending 10 hours a week, on one episode, I can spend 10, one hour.
Troy Trewin: The recordings, you know, I can get more episodes out there and reach more people. Yeah, as I like to joke delegations my middle name.
Cliff Duvernois: Well, for me, it’s, it’s all part of a, and I’m sure that you’ve heard about this before. My NIF Donovan education. But, it’s the process it’s, when you look at any kind of a framework or a process for that matter, and if you’re looking at, steps, it’s always eliminate automate delegate.
Cliff Duvernois: And for me, as far as like delegation goes, it has to make a pass. And automate first well. And so even if I decide that this step isn’t required and I inject it, what can I do to automate it? If I can’t automate it, then I delegate it because I can tell you this right now. It’s and I’m a little bit late getting to the party, which is embarrassing, but I finally hired my first VA this last December.
Cliff Duvernois: And. That has been an absolute game changer for me. I am, yeah, I am so happy. She’s on my team. And there was a, I just shared this in the last interview that he did, but there was like a week where I was down sick and she kept right on working. Didn’t miss a beat, he came back and all this work was done.
Cliff Duvernois: Now I’m training her on how to write show notes for the podcast and everything else like that. And she’s just eating it up. so that’s great because the one thing that you pointed out earlier is and I actually want to reference the, uh, the Big Leap by Gay Hendricks talking about being in your zone of genius, right?
Cliff Duvernois: So it could have see you for recognizing that you could, you know, do what you’re best at. Right. You’re good at getting the questions you’re good at getting people to, to really share their experiences. You’re good with connecting people. I truly believe that is your zone of genius. Right? You could learn editing, you could learn video, but that’s not where you really Excel.
Cliff Duvernois: Because the people you hired, this is obviously there’s zone of genius, right? They love to do this.
Troy Trewin: Absolutely. Yeah. They follow clear procedures. And the other point you made a minute ago about automation. There’s a lot of great tools out there to help you get your podcasts ready. Cut down the audio, the, the pauses, et cetera, and produce the first draft of the show notes. Yeah, so the, podcasting started probably 15, 16 years ago in a serious way, and now there’s a lot more tools to make it a lot more efficient, even just for someone doing it on.
Cliff Duvernois: Yeah exactly. And yeah, cause the way that I learned it, the videos. So I started my podcasting, like maybe six or seven years ago. The videos I watched already at that time were like five years old. I was, I learned how to do it the most inefficient way you would’ve fired me.
Troy Trewin: And podcasting is huge now. I mean, then there’s still so much more growth to go. But it is a big medium for people to consume knowledge. And just look at Spotify is acquisition of Joe, Joe Rogan a couple of year and a half ago now for a hundred million dollars, huge it’s. Uh, and at the same time, they’re also snapping up some of those infrastructure companies that can insert ads into.
Troy Trewin: Casts on the fly show production, et cetera. So obviously they’re betting big on, on podcasts. And I think it’s the, it’s still growing as a percentage of a learning tool for people,
Cliff Duvernois: Yeah. And I agree with that. And it was the other day, uh, I read it in my podcast news feed, but so the New York times very big. And they actually just spent a lot of money buying podcast, which I thought was probably the best move that they could make because print, the print media, nobody’s buying newspapers anymore.
Cliff Duvernois: They’re consuming all their content online. So for them to go into podcasts, they make that shift. I think it was a bold move, but more importantly, I think it was, I think it was the right move. know for them, cause they’re still going to be able to get that advertiser space for these big podcasts. And, having these bigger podcasts on there, you know, be able to drive revenue that way for their business, a lot more than you probably could with print,
Troy Trewin: Absolutely.
Cliff Duvernois: , if people are listening, they want to connect with you, you know, check out your show and, uh, start consuming all that good content out there because you do talk a lot about mindset, which I think is actually a universal. So if they want to connect with you, what’s the best way to do that.
Troy Trewin: Just go to our website, grow small business.com. And from there you can click on podcast this six on that page, but if you can view, if you click view all, then on the right hand side, you can see we’ve categorized the podcast by country by number of team members by industry. So you can find some good costs there that might be relevant to you from that website, you can obviously also get to our Facebook page and Instagram and LinkedIn as well. So feel free to connect to me, connect directly with me on LinkedIn. There’s another good place to, um, to keep up to date with what we’re doing.
Cliff Duvernois: Wonderful. That’s really great. And for our audience, we will make sure to have all those links in the show notes down below Troy. It’s been great having you on the podcast today. Thank you so much for your time. I really do appreciate it.
Troy Trewin: Thank you Cliff. And as I said before, we hit record, this is only the second time of being on the other side of the microphone. So I really appreciate your time and letting me on your show.